What are the 20 Most Iconic Pop Culture Moments of the 2000s?

The 2000s have seen a lot of technological advancement as the huge tech companies we see today started to make their way into our life. Most of these advancements were culture-shifting, and in this decade, they changed how we lived our life. 

Many pop-culture moments have truly shifted our perspective on the world and social situations. However, the 2000s were fun as well. It was the peak decade for pop music, and many hits were produced. Furthermore, television had gotten way bigger than anyone anticipated, due to which, there was an influx of reality TV.

Overall, the 2000s was an interesting decade filled with crazy fads and major icons. Let’s look at the 20 most iconic pop culture moments of the 2000s. 

Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt started dating when the 20th century was coming to the end, but with the start of the 21st, they decided to take their relationship to the next level and got married to one another on July 29, 2000. They splashed out on a lavish Malibu wedding. 

Their relationship was highly publicized, yet unlike most marriages in Hollywood, theirs was a success. At least for a few years until things started to get rocky between the two of them. Only five years into their marriage, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt announced that they would be separating.

The news of the divorce came on January 7, 2005, and was finalized on October 2. Amid their divorce proceedings, the media speculated why this star couple had parted ways. The most popular theory was that Brad Pitt had been unfaithful to his wife, Aniston, with Angelina Jolie. Some fans were so invested in the legal proceedings that they fashioned t-shirts with either Team Aniston or Team Jolie.

This entire relationship had the entire country in a chokehold, as people could not wait to see the drama unfold. Furthermore, people were curious to find some reason for the divorce, and there were numerous rumors and speculations about both; the media personalities involved. 

Destiny’s Child releases new music

Destiny’s Child made a name for themselves in the 2000s. They were particularly successful at the 2001 Billboards Music Awards, where they won two of the biggest awards, among three others. They took home the Artist of the Year Awards and the Duo/ Group of the Year. The following year, they again won the Artist of the Year.

With these awards in hand, Destiny’s Child had established itself as a popular group that had the ability to produce hits after hits. In the midst of their high, they recorded their third album called Survivor. This album was mainly co-produced and co-written by Knowles, who became more interested in the producing aspect of music-making.

Survivor was a success, and entered the Billboards 200 at number one. The three singles from this album also reached the top three in the United States. They were successful in many other countries as well. However, before they could go on tour to promote and perform the album, the 9/11 tragedy happened, and they had to cancel their European tour. 

The 9/11 Tragedy

The September 11 attacks or the 9/11 tragedy consisted of four coordinated suicide terrorist attacks, that were carried out on September 11, 2001, by Al-Qaeda. This group is a militant Islamic extremist network that launched an attack on the US using highjacked planes.

On the morning of September 11, 2001, Al-Qaeda highjacked four commercial airlines mid-air while they were on a route from the northern US to California. They then redirected the planes and crashed two of them into the World Trade Center in New York City. The third building crashed into the Pentagon, located in Arlington Virginia. The fourth plane was supposed to hit the federal government building in Washington, but instead, it crashed in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. 

This attack resulted in thousands being dead and tens of thousands being injured. It is one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in human history and forced every country in the world to make reforms to their security and stand up against terrorists. 

Britney Spears’ Controversy

Britney Spears was a pop icon in the 2000s. She had many hit songs and a hugely successful career. Therefore, it came as a shock when she was pictured driving with her son on her lap instead of in a car seat. When this picture surfaced in 2006, there was a massive uproar.

In particular, child advocates were horrified by these images and called for action to be taken. Spears responded to the outrage and admitted that she was at fault, but she was scared of the paparazzi, which is why she seated her child in her lap while driving.

Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire

The 2000s was a decade filled with questionable reality tv shows with a competition-style format. One of the shows is Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire. This American reality TV show has 50 women who are competing against one another in beauty pageant-style content. The winner of this show gets to marry an extremely wealthy man. 

This show was aired on Fox as a single broadcast, which lasted for 2 hours on February 15, 2000, and was hosted by Jay Thomas. Due to the nature of the show, it attracted a lot of negative attention. The Feminist National Organization for Women and the conservative Media Research program show intense dislike for the show. 

Survivor, The Tv Show

Survivor is an international reality competition. However, the American made a remake of it and aired it on CBS. The first episode premiered on May 31, 2000, hosted by Jeff Probst. Along with being a producer, Probst was also an executive producer of the show with Mark Burnett and Parson, who was the original creator of the show.

This reality show places a group of people in an isolated location, where they are left to fend for themselves. They had to arrange for food, fire, and shelter and survive in harsh environments. 

To keep things interesting, the participants compete in challenges that test their physical ability, mental abilities, and endurance. They are made to run, solve puzzles, and do various other tasks successfully to progress in the show and get rewards and immunity. Those who are unable to complete the tasks are eliminated. 

This show has been extremely successful, and the first eleven seasons are rated as the top shows watched in America. It has also received many awards. 

Eminem’s The Marshall Mathers

Eminem, an American rapper released his third studio album titled Marshall Mathers on May 23, 2000. This album was released by Aftermath Entertainment and Interscope Records and produced mostly by Eminem and Dr. Dre. The 45 King, Mel-Man, and Bass Brothers also helped in the production of this album.

When released, it was surrounded by controversy, but it pushed Eminem to the forefront, and everyone began to recognize him as a proper musician. In the 2000s, he was at the forefront of American pop culture due to the album, despite the controversial lyrics, receiving much acclaim and praise. Everyone recognized Enimem’s lyrical abilities and greatly praised them.

Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson was an inspiration to all artists in popular artists in the 2000s. She was also active during this period and worked on many projects. She starred in a film called Nutty Professor II: The Klumps in July 2000. Her character was called Professor Denise Gaines, and she was opposite Eddie Murphy.

Janet Jackson also released her seventh album All for You in April 2001. As soon as it was released, it was a hit and got on the number one spot on Billboard 200. It sold 605,000 copies and was the highest first-week sales of her career. Furthermore, it was among the highest first-week sales done by a female artist in history.

Bring It On

Bring it on is an iconic American cheerleading comedy film released in 2000. This film was directed by Peyton Reed and written by Jessica Bendinger. When released in theaters on August 25, 2000, it was an instant success.

On release, the film was in the number 1 spot in North America and remained in that position for two weeks. Therefore, earning a large sum of money. Even though at release there were mixed reviews, the film has become a cult class. 

Oprah’s O Magazine

O, The Oprah Magazine, also known as O, is an American monthly magazine founded by Oprah Winfrey and Hearst Communication for women all around the world. It was first published on April 19, 2000, and since June 2004, it has sold millions of copies, and almost 2/3rd of those who purchase them are subscribers. Ever since it started publishing, Oprah has appeared on the cover of every issue. The first cover that did not only feature Oprah was that of April 2009. On that cover, she appeared with Michelle Obama, the ex-first lady of Michelle Obama. 

Apple grows big

Apple is an American multinational technology company that has a line of consumer electronics, software, and various online services. On March 24, 2001. Apple revolutionized its devices by announcing that it would be releasing its modern operating system. This system was named the Mac OS X.

After a few failed attempts, the Mac OS X was designed to be a reliable, secure, and stable operating system based on NeXTSTEP, OPENSTEP, and BSD Unix. Furthermore, they also wanted their phones to be easy to use, which is why they took inspiration from Ubix. 

The company also opened up retail stores to allow customers to come in and purchase devices directly from them. These two Apple stores were located in Virginia and California. These stores also allowed the presentation of the company to improve. 

Digital Music

With various digital devices in the making, it became possible for you to take your music along with you. Music became portable thanks to the rise of the popularity of platforms such as Napster and LimeWire. Due to these, music was slowly shifting from physical to electronic media.

The desire to consume was the main reason for this shift. People were unable to keep purchasing CDs, and stacking them up. The option to move their music to someplace where they could access it with a click of a button sounded much more appealing.


With music being digitalized in the 2000s, it was only natural that devices that enabled users to listen to their music digitally would also become super popular. On October 23. 2001, Apple released the first version of the iPod. 

Upon release, iPod was a success. People enjoyed having a handheld device that could store their music in one place. Furthermore, Apple was looking to refine its device by continually changing up the style, look and feel of this device.

Beyonce goes solo

After being a part of Destiny’s Child, Beyonce started to experiment with solo works. She eased herself into it by featuring in a Jay Z song. This song was 03 Bonnie and Clyde, released on October 20. It was a fairly popular song as it reached number four on US Billboards Hot 100 chart.

Soon after, on June 14, 2003, Beyonce gave the audience a peek at the songs from her first solo album during her first solo concert. This album was called Dangerously in Love, and it was a huge success. The album was released on June 24, 2003, and sold a staggering 317,000 copies in the first week. Therefore, it debuted at number one on the Billboard 200.

The Office in America

The Office is a mockumentary sitcom television series that depicts office life. This show aired on March 24, 2005, on NBC, and has been a huge success. Developed by Greg Daniels. The viewers were charmed by the comedy and the characters. 

The show was originally based on a series by the same name that ran on BBC from 2001 to 2003. At first, people were skeptical of the show, but later, after a few seasons, they began to warm up to the characters and enjoyed the dynamics they had. 

Netflix begins streaming


Netflix is an American subscription-based streaming service company that also produces its tv shows and movies. However, when Netflix was founded, it was someplace you could buy and rent DVDs, and it operated by mail. However, in January 2007, the company launched a new service that allowed users to stream media.

The introduction of video on demand was popular with the public, who was starting to warm up to the idea of media and music being digitized. 

Twilight in theaters

In 2008, Twilight, an American romantic fantasy film, was released. Twilight was based on Stephanie Meyer’s novel of the same name released in 2005. It was one of the books that shaped pop culture in the 2000s. This film was the first of the series and was directed by Catherine Hardwicke. 

The film revolved around a budding relationship between a human, Bella Swan, played by Kristen Stewart, and a vampire, Edward Cullen, played by Robert Pattison. The production of the film took three years, as a screen adaptation has to be written for the movie. 

When released, twilight was a huge success as it grossed $7 million in ticket sales from just midnight showings. It earned about $35.7 million on its opening day, which shows how popular it was. 

RuPaul’s drag race debuts

RuPaul’s Drag Race is an American reality TV show. Among the many reality shows being watched in America in the 2000s, RuPaul’s Drag Race was one of the most unique ones. It was the first series of the Drag Race franchise and was produced by World of Wonder and was aired on Logo TV and WOW Presents Plus. 

In the show, RuPaul appears as the host, main judge, and mentor, where he judges the contestants on different challenges each week. This show has become one of the most popular and highest-rated television shows on Logo and is watched all around the world. Furthermore, it has also won many awards, such as the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program four consecutive times. 

Hulu for the public

The 2000s was a time when streaming companies were on the rise. In October 2007, Hulu, an American subscription-based streaming service was launched. The majority of this company was owned by The Walt Disney Company, while Comcast and NBCUniversal held a minority stake.

To kick off its service, Hulu struck a deal with several content providers, which made it so new and additional material was available for the public to enjoy. It also started to make partnerships with various record labels in 2009, to expand its services.

High School Musical premiere

Among the cult classic movies, High School Musical is near the top of everyone’s list. Released in 2006, it is an American musical television film that was written by Peter Barsocchini and directed by Kenny Ortega. 

The film starred Zac Efron, Ashley Tisdale, Vanessa Hudgens, and many other big stars. Upon its release in January 2006, it was an instant success and went on to become one of the most commercially successful films of all time.


The 2000s were a rollercoaster for everyone who lived through them. There were huge tragedies like the 9/11 tragedy, but it was also a decade filled with incredible skills and music. It was a decade that focused on technological advancements, and pop culture followed along with the trend.